If employees agree to take part in mediation, do they give up their right to use formal grievance proceeding?

No. Mediation is ‘without prejudice’, and if employees choose to try mediation, they still reserve their right to use other measures at a later date.

How confidential is mediation?

The process of mediation is entirely confidential, both within the mediation itself, and with respect to further proceedings. The mediator will not divulge any confidences that are shared unless given permission to do so. The only exception to this would be if information of a criminal nature was discussed in the mediation, when the mediator would be obliged to inform the police.

What happens if the parties don’t like the mediated agreement?

The content and the terms of the agreement are entirely a matter for the parties to agree upon. Together they are responsible for defining the problem and setting the agenda. No agreement can or will be imposed on the parties through mediation. As mediation is voluntary and ‘without prejudice’, so the content of any mediation cannot be discussed at any future tribunal or court hearing. The mediator cannot be called as a witness if there are any future proceedings.

 How long will the mediation take?

Generally the mediation is completed within one working day. A typical mediation day looks like this:

1000-1115                Mediator meets with Party 1

1130-1245                Mediator meets with Party 2

1245-1345                Break for lunch

1345 onwards          Joint mediation – mediator with Parties 1 and 2 together

What is the cost?

The fee is £495 per mediation (exclusive of travel costs).